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ever, after very few attendances in the gallery of the House of Commons, thất our representation did « not very widely deviate from the actual state of things.” He then remarked that it was perfectly natural that the various stratagems and maneuvres above described should suggest themselves to minds heated by opposition, and elevated by the hope of temporary triumph : but he could hardly have believed that any man should coolly and deliberately, even though in jest, devise and detail a regular system of management, so much at variance with the ordinary notions of good faith that prevail in the transactions of mankind.
It would be improper to close this series of scandalous procepts, without adding that, though Mr. Hamilton regarded the British senate in general as a mere amphitheatre for political prize-fighters, he acknowleged sonne questions to be of a vital nature, of such magnitude, and so intimately connected with the safety and welfare of the whole conimunity, that no inducement or friendly disposition to any party ought to have the smallest weight in the decision ; and it will probably excite no great surprize in any of our readers who may form their notion of his intellectual habits from what we have stated, to learn that he always contemplated with the most irreconcileable hostility the proposition for a PARLIAMENTARY REFORM, or in other words, for a new-modelling the constitution of Parliament.'
It may seem unaccountable that all the laborious preparation and all the eager impatience for distinction, which marked this youtlıful candidate, should have terminated in the English House of Commons in producing that single speech, from which he received his familiar and well known designation, during the long remainder of his life. The effect, however, of this solitary effort appears to have been wonderful. " There was a young Mr. Hamilton,” (said Horace Walpole) “who spoke for the first time, AND WAS AT ONCE PERFEC
His speech was set, and full of antitheses ; but those antitheses were full of argument ; indeed his speech was the most full of argument of the whole day, and he broke through the regularity of his own composition, answered other people, and fell into his own track again, with the greatest ease.
His figure is advantageous, his voice strong and clear, his manner spirited, and the whole with the ease of an established speaker.” He does indeed appear to have offered himself a second time to the notice of the house, but probably, (according to his biographer) he shone with less lustre than on the former occasion. Mr. Fox, however, who at that time (1756) was secretary of state, gave him a seat at the board of
trade, of which Lord Halifax was president ; and when that nobleman was appointed Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Mr. Hamilton accompanied his lordship in the character of his principal secretary.
In the Irish House of Commons, this aceomplished statesman is said to have been heard with delight: but the only two of his orations in that assembly which are preserved in this volume do not, we confess, raise to a very high pitch our estimate of his persuasive powers. They are classical and correct compositions, bearing a considerable resemblance to the style of Demosthenes : but they smell more of the lamp than their Athenian models, while the language in which they are written is less susceptible of elaborate refinement.--He occupied the same office under the Earl of Northumberland, the successor of Lord Halifax, but resigned it in consequence of some disgust, during the first session which occurred in that vice-royalty. On his return to England, he certainly meditated taking an active part in the political warfare of the House of Commons, having made many preparatory collections on the various subjects agitated there, but he never again addressed the chair, though he was elected into every new parliament that was suminoned from that time to May 1796;' when he ceased to represent the late Earl of Lonsdale, to whom he was indebted for his seat, in consequence of demanding the privilege of acting with more freedom according to the convictions of his own mind, than that zealous supporter of Mr. Pitt's ministry was disposed to allow. The letter, in which this demand was made, is preserved in a note to the preface, and certainly reflects honour on the writer. What circumstances had occurred at that period to inspire Mr. Hamilton with a wish to exercise “ the power of thinking for *himself,” or what induced him to deem it material that he should vote according to his conviction, we should have been glad to learn, but are left to conjecture ; yet we think it may without rashness be presumed that his noble patron had no anxiety to force his conscience in favour of a PARLIAMENTARY REFORM.
Mr. Hamilton died in his sixty-eighth year, on the 16th of July 1796 ; leaving among those who had the pleasure of his acquaintance, the character of an honourable, a friendly, and a very able man. The force of his style, and his extent of political knowlege, acquired for him the honour of being considered as the long disguised Junius : but the friend who has composed his biographical memoir strongly combats this opinion, though principally by internal evidence, and we are much disposed to acquiesce in the justice of his arguments.
Of the treatise which occupies the larger half of this volume, we have hitherto spoken chiefly as it illustrates the political morality of the present day, and the actual character of the British House of Commons : but we should deeń it very unfair to conclude without stating that it abounds with proofs of the author's great acuteness, sagacity, and knowlege of human nature ; and that, while too many of its precepts are exclusively and avowedly framed to varnish falsehood and suppress truth, not a small portion of them contains admirable instructions to facilitate the detection of fallacies, the exposure of errors, and the triumph of rectitude over sophistry. It will be sufficient to transcribe a few pointed sentences, which are placed in immediate succession to each other, but without order or connection :
• A fact may result from a concurrence of traditions, though not resting on the authority of a particular one.
• Probability of a thing, (in one view,) against its being true : i.e. men are less likely to examine into it.
• A concurrence of independent and indifferent testimony, having no similariiy of motive or design, no common principle to act upon, is the strongest : nothing but notoriety can produce such a concurrence.
• Shew, that by the same liberty of guessing, distinct, opposite, and yet equal, probabilities might be formed.
Distinguish between a fact and an opinion grounded upon it. • Reduce every thing to its reason and its principle.
• Do not mistake, nor let others mistake, a strong, peculiar circumstance, for a general principle.
• Obviate not only the objection stated, but turn aside, and see if there is no other. Perfection of law consists in its being so framed, that it
may govern acciderits, not lie at the mercy of them. For a law to owe its utility to a conjuncture, is but little praise.
• Point out the difference between forsaking a thing and forsaking the ors of it.
• You are bound to give not only an affirmative approbation to a law, but negative,-to do nothing contrary to it.
· Men are often right, in denying some thing ; but wrong in concluding that what they say, therefore, follows from it.
• Men often conclude right from wrong principles.
• Distinguish between what was our first inducement to believe, and what confirmed us in it finally:'
These are not the tricks of debate, but the rules of just thinking and fair deduction. Si sic omnia, the treatise of Cicero de oratore, though a more finished, would scarcely have been a more valuable essay.
We see not any necessity for having reprinted the four juvenile odes composed by Mr. Hamilton ; they display no poetical genius, and not much felicity of expression.
Dr. Johnson's considerations on corn, written in a period of scarcity, (November 1766.) are a defence of the bounty on exportation. The admirable observations, interspersed in his tour to the Hebrides, must dispose us to expect much of original and judicious reflection on political economy from his powerful mind, though not peculiarły versed in its details. On this, however, as on all other occasions, the sturdy moralist fairly faces his subject, walks boldly up to it, and surveys it in every part with a steady and scrutinizing eye. If we cannot here yield an unqualified assent to his positions, we are nevertheless highly pleased with some of his arguments, and particularly · with his clear and comprehensive mode of stating the question.—In the posthumous Prayers and Meditations of that great man, a prayer occurs dated November 1765, “on ENGAGING IN Politics with Mr. Hun, unquestionably meaning Mr. Hamilton :" but we do not feel ourselves com pelled to admit with Boswell that this alludes to a temporary fit of ambition, nor with the present editor that he at that time entered into some engagement with Mr. Hamilton occasionally to furnish him with his sentiments on great political topics. Why may he not have alluded to one of those colloquial trials of strength, in which his mighty mind rejoiced to exere itself ?-It is stated that the Doctor had seen the Parliamentary Logic, and • considered it a very curious and master y performance, but objected to the too great refinement and conciseness of some parts of it, and wished that some of the precepts had been more opened and expanded.' Were there none which he would have regarded it as advisable to expunge? Yet perhaps Johnson, who thought that all advantages might fairly be taken, even for the purpose of obtaining a temporary triumph in common conversation over the friends who acknowleged his superiority, had no right to remonstrate against the employment of similar means for securing the ascendancy of those political associates, to whom a man persuades himself that the country must look for prosperity, and from whom he is at least certain that his own hopes of preferment must be derived.
Art. III. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, for the Year 1809. Part I. 4to. 14s. 6d. sewed. Nicol & Son.
MEDICINE, CHEMISTRY, and NATURAL HISTORY. THE 'HE Croonian Lecture. On the Functions of the Heart and
Arteries. By Thomas Young, M.D. For. Sec. R.S.-The object of this paper is to prove that the muscular power of the 8
arteries has little effect in propelling the blood through them. Dr. Young begins by laying down a position, to the justice of which we are disposed to subscribe, that the mechanical actions which take place in living bodies are regulated by the same general laws as those of inanimate matter. The force of gravity acts on the living exactly in the same manner as on the dead body; light is affected by the eye precisely as by any other substances possessing the same refractive powers ; and, gene rally, there is no case in which it can be proved, that animated bodies are exempted from any of the affections to which inanimate bodies are liable, except when the powers of life are capable of instituting a process, calculated to overcome those affections, by others, which are commensurate to them, and which are of a contrary tendency. On this principle, Dr. Young concludes that, as far as the functions of life depend on the motion of Auids, so far must these functions be reducible to the mechanical laws of moving bodies, and consequently that the question respecting the nature of the circulation, and the degree in which the progressive motion of the blood depends on the muscular or elastic powers of the arteries, must belong to the science of hydraulics, provided that the nature of the powers and the modes of their operation be distinctly known. He arranges his observations under four heads. In the first place, he inquires
• What would be the nature of the circulation of the blood, if the whole of the veins and arteries were invariable in their dimensions, like tubes of glass or of bone ; in the second place, in what manner the pulse would be transmitted from the heart through the arteries, if they were merely elastic tubes ; and in the third place, what actions we can with propriety attribute to the muscular coats of the arteries themselves. I shall lastly add some observations on the disturbances of these motions, which may be supposed to occur in different kiods of inflammations and of fevers.'
In the propulsion of the blood from the heart, along the arteries into the veins, Dr. Young considers it as subjected to a degree of pressure which is almost entirely expended in overcoming the friction of the vessels. The points, therefore, to which we have to attend, are the amount of the pressure and of the friction; the former he deduces from the experiments of Hales, and the latter from his own experiments on the motion of water through minute tubes, which were some time ago laid before the Royal Society. Fie then proceeds to the different data which are necessary to. establish his conclusions; for which purpose he has recourse to the calculations of Keill for the capacity of the arterial system and the velocity of the blood ; and to the observations of Haller for the quantity of blood contained in the whole sanguiferous sysa? REY. DEC. 1809.